Three students working together on the nursing simulation manikin.




Serve communities in need. Focus on the people in your care and build relationships with them. Become an inclusive leader in nursing.

Why Study Nursing at Winona State?

When you aren’t feeling well or have a minor injury, a Registered Nurse (RN) is likely the first face you’ll see.  

RNs provide patient care and coordinate patient plans. They work closely with physicians and other healthcare professionals to do this.  

Registered Nurses also teach patients and the public how to manage certain health conditions. They work in clinics, hospitals, schools, nursing homes, and other facilities. 

The wide range of RN specialties offer many career possibilities: 

  • Support people recovering from surgery 
  • Run immunization clinics and blood drives 
  • Closely monitor people with serious and complex conditions 
  • Take care of newborn babies, cancer patients, and the elderly 
  • Help patients overcome mental health concerns, substance abuse, and addictions 
  • Work with patients who have disabilities, chronic illnesses, genetic disorders, and other health issues 

The demand for passionate care providers has never been greater. Become a Registered Nurse with the Nursing major through WSU’s Department of Undergraduate Nursing.  

The Nursing major is meant for anyone who doesn’t have previous nursing education or a nursing license. This program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)

What Will You Learn as a Nursing Major?

As a Nursing Major, you’ll strengthen your skills in communication, critical thinking, prioritization, and evidence-based practice. 

You’ll also gain experience in multiple models of practice, including: 

  • traditional clinical model—provide direct patient care in a clinical setting with faculty supervision. 
  • Dedicated Education Unit (DEU) model—learn firsthand what nursing is all about from trained Registered Nurses. 
  • preceptor model of clinical education—provide direct patient care in a clinical setting and be supervised by an RN selected by your Nursing faculty.  

This program comprises 4 terms. Think of terms as milestones in knowledge and understanding. Each term features important concepts applicable to all nursing specialties.

Term 1



Leadership skills

Medical-surgical concepts

RN-level skills and assessments

Term 2

Caring for older adults

Research fundamentals

Evidence-based practice

Psychosocial aspects of nursing

Term 3


Labor and delivery

Community-based health care

High acuity situations in nursing

Term 4

Hospice care

Transition to practice

Complex care situations

Public health foundations

Mental health fundamentals

You’ll also complete extensive group assignments and projects.

Your coursework is designed to train you to effectively work in teams and resolve conflicts. 

Graduation Requirement

Aside from major- or minor-specific requirements, you’ll need to complete additional requirements through the General Education Program (GEP) to earn your degree from Winona State University.

Learn More about the GEP
Student Success Stories
Zeinab Mohamed '22, Nursing major

To be a Warrior means to persevere. Meet Zeinab, who balanced being a new mother and a Nursing student at WSU thanks to the support of her professors.

Kendra Nusbaum '22, Nursing major

Our students chase their dreams while earning their degrees. Like Kendra, who has a passion for eliminating language barriers in health care and is making a difference locally and globally.

Juan Manual Rojas Cabrera '19, Nursing major

As a first-generation student from an immigrant Mexican family, Juan faced many challenges. But the guidance he received and his perseverance ultimately helped him achieve his degree in Nursing.

Program Highlights

Real-World Training

Clinical Experiences

You’ll complete nearly 550 clinical hours as a Nursing major. This includes a 120-hour immersion experience when you’ll be paired with a Registered Nurse in a practice setting.

These clinicals will let you get hands-on practice in a variety of specialties, like acute care, community health, hospice care, labor and delivery, mental health, older adults, pediatrics, and public health.

Community Partnerships

WSU has a broad array of clinical partnerships in Winona, La Crosse, Rochester, and the Twin Cities. You could find yourself at Mayo Clinic, Gundersen Health System, Winona Health, or Bridges Health.

Or you can explore clinical opportunities outside the region, such as a clinical exchange experience in Sweden.

Licensure Preparation

The NCLEX is the premier nurse licensure exam. You must pass this exam to qualify for entry-level RN positions and to provide safe and effective care.

This program integrates case studies, lessons, and targeted quizzes inside and outside the classroom. These study aids combine to offer a solid foundation for NCLEX preparation.

Competitive Certification

Be one step closer to becoming an RN by getting the real-world preparation you need along with your degree.

The Nursing program curriculum prepares you to apply for a Public Health Nurse (PHN) certification through the Minnesota Board of Nursing. This certification will help you meet the needs of our changing healthcare landscape.

You’ll also be ready to apply for a School Nurse license through the Minnesota Professional Educator Licensing & Standards Board.

Beyond the Classroom

Engaging Learning Spaces

The WSU Nursing Simulation Lab allows students to practice care for a wide range of patient types in a safe and controlled environment.

This space features several sophisticated and life-like manikins—from newborn, infant, and child to adult and a birthing mom.

We’ve also partnered with Winona Health to offer an additional simulation space for Nursing students.

Program Admission & Advising

There are 2 ways to be admitted to the Nursing major. 

Direct Admission

Direct Admission guarantees acceptance to this program for students who earned exceptional ACT/SAT scores and excellent college grades.

Holistic Admission

If you aren’t the best test taker, don’t worry. We’ll consider your personal achievements in nursing, volunteer and community service experiences, and GPA through Holistic Admission.

Most applicants for this program apply through Holistic Admission.

Personalized Advising

You’ll receive individualized student advising services and other support every semester from your first year through graduation.  

There’s also a nursing student success-focused advisor who’s ready to guide you through your educational journey and answer your questions along the way. Schedule an appointment today.

Hear from Nursing Alumni
I’m proud to wear my purple scrubs when I go to clinical sites because we’re known and respected as Winona State students.
Lexie Adamsky ‘19
The professors are your friends. They want to see you succeed and are willing to help you understand and be a better student.
Brett Thomas Strub ‘19
I am incredibly excited to work alongside many of the nurses who provided care for my sister and ultimately inspired me to study nursing.
Jamie Reynolds ‘19
Careers & Outcomes

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Registered Nurses are within the top 20 professions with the highest expected number of new jobs until 2031. 

Your bachelor’s degree in Nursing will also prepare you for graduate school. Become an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) to level up in your career. APRN professions like nurse anesthetists, nurse midwives, and nurse practitioners are predicted to grow by 40% in the next decade.